We left my house at around 8:00 AM on March 29th, it was raining. As I walked to the back seat of the car my brother shouted and said “You don’t want to sit in the front?”. This suprised me since despite me being 27 and him 30 we still play that stupid game where the first to shout “Shotgun!” gets to ride in the front. He always wins so I don’t even bother trying anymore. I realize it sounds insignificant but the notion was symbolic and it meant a lot to me. I accepted his offer.
The three hour ride was pretty standard. Nothing but garbage on the radio, mom and brother arguing over the pettiest things, me and him egging her on, her slamming the brakes constantly and switching lanes every 30 seconds. Only two things make me motion sick – some VR roller coaster game I can’t recall the name of and her driving. I wouldn’t of had it any other way, if I could survive that car ride then prison was going to be a joke.
Honestly I wasn’t bothered until the short stretch of road leading to the compound. They dropped me off, we hugged and I said a brief goodbye before walking off. Drawing it out or having them go in with me would of just made things harder. I think they were dissapointed but understood.
After telling a guard I was there to self surrender I waited in a waiting room for at least an hour. Eventually someone led me back and began the intake process. Standard affair I assume, a pile of paperwork, interview with several people, and fingerprints by the rudest lady I’ve ever met. Oh, also a “squat and cough” which I was mortified of, but when the time came I didn’t give it a second thought. Adapt or be broken.
A guard directed me to my assigned unit and upon arriving there another inmate led me across the hall and to my bunk. Initially I was pretty anxious because I would be staying in this open room full of strangers. I was very on edge and within a few seconds people began to approach me asking where I’m from and what I’m in for.
After that uncomfortable interogation they bombarded me with ramen, coffee, cups, bowls, soap, etc. I tried rejecting the donations because I assumed strings were attached but I realized it was futile. I returned and repaid everything A.S.A.P just in case, I don’t want to owe any favors.
I read some Wired magazines until the final count at which point they turned off the lights and I went to sleep.
To be continued…